Modern care for patients with Alzheimer disease: Rationale for early intervention
This article was published in Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, Volume 110, Issue 9 SUPPL. 8, Pages S37-S42.The published version is available at http://jaoa.org/article.aspx?articleid=2094038.
Copyright © 2010.
More than 5 million people in the United States are afflicted with Alzheimer disease, a condition that is the seventh leading cause of death in the nation. Lacking definitive disease-modifying treatments, modern care for individuals with Alzheimer disease is necessarily multimodal, combining the use of approved pharmaceutic agents (ie, acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonists, antipsy-chotics), lifestyle and behavioral interventions, and components of palliative care. Some promising experimental treatments are undergoing clinical trials, including immunotherapy to prevent the deposition of-amyloid, a protein implicated as an etiologic factor in the disease. The authors briefly examine the rationale and methods for screening patients for early indications of the onset of Alzheimer disease. They also describe current and potential treatments for patients with this disease.